HHomeBackground Color:He
LiBePlatinum Pictures PageBlack White GrayBCNOFNe
NaMgPlatinum Technical DataAlSiPSClAr
KCaPlatinum Isotope DataScTiVCrMnFeCoNiCuZnGaGeAsSeBrKr
RbSrYZrNbMoTcRuRhPdAgCdInSnSbTeIXe
CsBaLaCePrNdPmSmEuGdTbDyHoErTmYbLuHfTaWReOsIrPtAuHgTlPbBiPoAtRn
FrRaAcThPaUNpPuAmCmBkCfEsFmMdNoLrRfDbSgBhHsMtDsRgCnUutUuqUupUuhUusUuo
Platinum     

Platinum

Atomic Weight 195.078
Density 21.09 g/cm3
Melting Point 1768.3 °C
Boiling Point 3825 °C
Full technical data

Pure platinum mesh, like mosquito netting except more expensive, is one example of platinum's use as labware impervious to nearly all chemical attack. It is also used in coins, which are similarly expensive.

Scroll down to see examples of Platinum.
The Elements book Mad Science book Periodic Table Poster  Click here to buy a book, photographic periodic table poster, card deck, or 3D print based on the images you see here!
Platinum Platinum disk

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Platinum disk.
Nickel-sized (but thinner) disk of pure platinum.
Source: Anonymous
Contributor: Anonymous
Acquired: 17 October, 2008
Text Updated: 29 October, 2009
Price: Donated
Size: 0.5"
Purity: 99.9%
Platinum Platinum electrode

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Platinum electrode.
Very pretty solid, pure platinum basket electrode.
Source: Anonymous
Contributor: Anonymous
Acquired: 17 October, 2008
Text Updated: 18 October, 2009
Price: Donated
Size: 2"
Purity: 99.9%
Platinum Platinum electrode

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Platinum electrode.
Very pretty solid, pure platinum basket electrode.
Source: Anonymous
Contributor: Anonymous
Acquired: 17 October, 2008
Text Updated: 18 October, 2009
Price: Donated
Size: 2"
Purity: 99.9%
Platinum 1/10 ounce platinum coin

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1/10 ounce platinum coin.
1/10 ounce platinum coin.
Source: Northwest Territorial Mint
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 25 April, 2009
Text Updated: 25 April, 2009
Price: $100
Size: 0.5"
Purity: 99.95%
Platinum Platinum electrode

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Platinum electrode.
This glass loop contains two platinum electrodes a fixed distance apart. Dipped into a liquid it can be used to measure the conductivity of the liquid, thus indirectly measuring the concentration of something, salt for example, in the solution. Platinum is a good material for such electrodes because it does not corrode even under very strong chemical attack.
Source: eBay seller gainexpress
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 17 April, 2009
Text Updated: 17 April, 2009
Price: $25
Size: 0.25"
Purity: 99%
Platinum Platinum body electrodes

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Platinum body electrodes.
Platinum mesh electrodes coated with incredibly sticky goo, designed to be stuck to the body to deliver mild electric shocks for medicinal purposes. (Not a quack device, there are real reasons for wanting to do this.)
Source: eBay seller wahyouwan
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 15 April, 2009
Text Updated: 15 April, 2009
Price: $10
Size: 1.5"
Purity: <1%
Platinum Platinum crucible

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Platinum crucible.
This is old platinum labware, a thin-walled cup used to hold something very corrosive (if whatever was in it wasn't very corrosive, it would have been put into something less expensive).
Source: Anonymous
Contributor: Anonymous
Acquired: 8 March, 2008
Text Updated: 8 March, 2008
Price: Donated
Size: 1"
Purity: 99.99%
Platinum Element coin

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Element coin.
Dave Hamric sells element samples under the name Metallium. He's developed a line of coins struck out of various common and uncommon metals: They are quite lovely, and very reasonably priced, considering the difficulty of creating some of them.
Here is the back side of this coin (click either picture to see it larger):

Click the Sample Group link below to see many other coins made of various elements, or click the link to his website above if you want to buy one like this.
Source: Dave Hamric
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 24 December, 2007
Text Updated: 24 December, 2007
Price: $185
Size: 0.75"
Purity: >99%
Sample Group: Coins
The Elements book Mad Science book Periodic Table Poster  Click here to buy a book, photographic periodic table poster, card deck, or 3D print based on the images you see here!
Platinum Platinum perforated cone

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Platinum perforated cone.
This tiny little cone was presumably used as some kind of filter or filter holder: It's made of platinum because platinum is resistant to nearly all chemical attack. Expensive, but useful, and the people buying this kind of stuff are usually spending your money, not theirs.
Source: Anonymous
Contributor: Anonymous
Acquired: 2 December, 2007
Text Updated: 8 March, 2008
Price: Donated
Size: 1"
Purity: 99.99%
Platinum Vapor deposited crystal

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Vapor deposited crystal.
Ivan Timokhin has sent me several very beautiful gold crystals (take a look under gold, you can't miss them, and there's also a description of the process there), but this is the first platinum one he's sent. The gold ones of course have that beautiful color, but these are pretty spectacular as well (though they are very small).
Source: Ivan Timokhin
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 20 November, 2007
Text Updated: 21 November, 2007
Price: $30
Size: 0.5"
Purity: >99.99%
Platinum Hollow cathode lamp

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Hollow cathode lamp.
Lamps like this are available for a very wide range of elements: Click the Sample Group link below to get a list of all the elements I have lamps like this for. They are used as light sources for atomic absorption spectrometers, which detect the presence of elements by seeing whether a sample absorbs the very specific wavelengths of light associated with the electronic transitions of the given element. The lamp uses an electric arc to stimulate the element it contains to emit its characteristic wavelengths of light: The same electronic transitions are responsible for emission and absorption, so the wavelengths are the same.
In theory, each different lamp should produce a different color of light characteristic of its element. Unfortunately, the lamps all use neon as a carrier gas: You generally have to have such a carrier gas present to maintain the electric arc. Neon emits a number of very strong orange-red lines that overwhelm the color of the specific element. In a spectrometer this is no problem because you just use a prism or diffraction grating to separate the light into a spectrum, then block out the neon lines. But it does mean that they all look pretty much the same color to the naked eye.
I've listed the price of all the lamps as $20, but that's really just a rough average: I paid varying amounts at various eBay auctions for these lamps, which list for a lot more from an instrument supplier.
(Truth in photography: These lamps all look alike. I have just duplicated a photo of one of them to use for all of them, because they really do look exactly the same regardless of what element is inside. The ones listed are all ones I actually have in the collection.)
Source: eBay seller heruur
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 24 December, 2003
Price: $20
Size: 8"
Purity: 99.9%
Sample Group: Atomic Emission Lamps
Platinum Placer grains

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Placer grains.
These are naturally occurring grains of platinum, similar to the gold placer grains one finds when panning for gold in streams. The seller says these are especially rare because many people who pan for gold throw them back in the water thinking they are just ordinary pebbles. They certainly look ordinary, but their high density would make them settle out with the grains of gold, which are similarly dense.
Source: eBay seller prospectorsgold
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 23 November, 2003
Price: $20
Size: 0.05"
Purity: >90%
Platinum Transfer leaf

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Transfer leaf.
I had been told by several US distributors of gilding (gold leafing) products that platinum leaf was at present not available. The supply from Germany had dried up, you know, the usual story. But Max was able to find a source in England and when he came here to help install the beautiful periodic table display that he and I recently built for DePauw University, he brought me a book of it. Unlike my other leafs (see the Sample Group link below), this one is "transfer leaf" which means it's loosely attached to thin sheets of paper. The idea is that when you paste it down onto something it will come off the paper. This style of leaf is said to be easier for the amateur to work with, which is a good thing since I'm quite the amateur at gilding.
Source: Max Whitby of RGB
Contributor: Max Whitby of RGB
Acquired: 1 November, 2003
Text Updated: 11 August, 2007
Price: Donated
Size: 2"
Purity: 20%
Sample Group: Metal leaf
Platinum Cat coin

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Cat coin.
This is the smallest, cheapest platinum coin I could find: 1/25th of an ounce and with a rather pretty cat on it. It was issued by the Isle of Man.
Source: eBay seller directcoin
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 10 July, 2003
Text Updated: 11 August, 2007
Price: $49
Size: 1/2"
Purity: 99.95%
Sample Group: Coins
Platinum Camp heater

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Camp heater.
This is a catalytic heater: It burns propane without an open flame, using a platinum catalyst that allows the propane to combine with oxygen (burn) at a much lower than normal temperature (about 800F). The platinum is distributed in tiny, high-surface area blobs throughout the ceramic mesh that makes up the burner unit. The advantage of this type of heater over one that just burns the propane directly is that it is less likely to burn your tent down, though the instructions still warn that it can set fabric on fire if it comes in direct contact. Here's a picture of the side of the box:


The heater works on the same principle as the catalytic converter in a car, which contains platinum or palladium to catalytically burn any fuel that remains in the exhaust gases (fully burned fuel is less polluting than unburned fuel). I have a picture of such a catalytic converter burning propane listed under palladium.
Source: Farm & Fleet
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 20 May, 2003
Price: $35
Size: 8"
Purity: <1%
Platinum Foil

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Foil.
Greg is helping me flesh out some elements with different and unusual forms, like wires, meshes, wools, foils, etc. This is high-purity platinum foil, very nice. He also sells lots of other unusual elements on eBay: Check the source link for more information.
Source: Greg P
Contributor: Greg P
Acquired: 18 April, 2003
Price: Donated
Size: 1"
Purity: 99.99%
Platinum Wire

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Wire.
Greg is helping me flesh out some elements with different and unusual forms, like wires, meshes, wools, foils, etc. This is high-purity platinum wire, very nice. He also sells lots of other unusual elements on eBay: Check the source link for more information.
Source: Greg P
Contributor: Greg P
Acquired: 18 April, 2003
Price: Donated
Size: 1"
Purity: 99.99%
Platinum Mesh

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Mesh.
This is a very unusual and very expensive form of platinum: Fine ultra-pure woven platinum cloth. (Like mosquito netting only more expensive.) .Greg sells this stuff and he very kindly donated a sample: This is way, way more expensive than I could possibly afford for an element sample (about $1100 a gram). He also sells lots of other unusual elements on eBay: Check the source link for more information.

I chose this sample to represent its element in my Photographic Periodic Table Poster. The sample photograph includes text exactly as it appears in the poster, which you are encouraged to buy a copy of.
Periodic Table Poster

Source: Greg P
Contributor: Greg P
Acquired: 18 April, 2003
Text Updated: 4 May, 2007
Price: Donated
Size: 1.5"
Purity: 99.99%
The Elements book Mad Science book Periodic Table Poster  Click here to buy a book, photographic periodic table poster, card deck, or 3D print based on the images you see here!
Platinum Sample from the Everest Set

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Sample from the Everest Set.
Up until the early 1990's a company in Russia sold a periodic table collection with element samples. At some point their American distributor sold off the remaining stock to a man who is now selling them on eBay. The samples (except gases) weigh about 0.25 grams each, and the whole set comes in a very nice wooden box with a printed periodic table in the lid.

To learn more about the set you can visit my page about element collecting for a general description and information about how to buy one, or you can see photographs of all the samples from the set displayed on my website in a periodic table layout or with bigger pictures in numerical order.

Source: Rob Accurso
Contributor: Rob Accurso
Acquired: 7 February, 2003
Text Updated: 29 January, 2009
Price: Donated
Size: 0.2"
Purity: >99%
Platinum Sample from the RGB Set

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Sample from the RGB Set.
The Red Green and Blue company in England sells a very nice element collection in several versions. Max Whitby, the director of the company, very kindly donated a complete set to the periodic table table.

To learn more about the set you can visit my page about element collecting for a general description or the company's website which includes many photographs and pricing details. I have two photographs of each sample from the set: One taken by me and one from the company. You can see photographs of all the samples displayed in a periodic table format: my pictures or their pictures. Or you can see both side-by-side with bigger pictures in numerical order.

The picture on the left was taken by me. Here is the company's version (there is some variation between sets, so the pictures sometimes show different variations of the samples):


Source: Max Whitby of RGB
Contributor: Max Whitby of RGB
Acquired: 25 January, 2003
Text Updated: 11 August, 2007
Price: Donated
Size: 0.2"
Purity: 99.95%
Platinum Spark plug

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Spark plug.
This spark plug claims that unlike ordinary spark plugs that have a platinum alloy electrode, it has a pure platinum center electrode. It also claims to use yttrium in the ground electrodes.
Source: Auto Parts Store
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 10 January, 2003
Text Updated: 11 August, 2007
Price: $5
Size: 3"
Purity: >90%
Sample Group: Spark Plugs
Platinum Spark Plug

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Spark Plug.
People make spark plugs out of the craziest elements, like Polonium. Platinum is used because it doesn't corrode under harsh conditions.
I remember hearing, probably on NPR's Car Talk show, that platinum spark plugs last so long that by the time you need to change them, they may have fused themselves to the aluminum block they are screwed into, making it impossible to remove them without stripping the engine block. They recommended just unscrewing and rescrewing them every couple of years. Ah, such modern problems.
Here's an interesting article about different elements in spark plugs.
Source: eBay seller accurateimage
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 31 July, 2002
Text Updated: 11 August, 2007
Price: $15
Size: 3"
Purity: >90%
Sample Group: Spark Plugs
Platinum One ounce bullion bar

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One ounce bullion bar.
I purchased this bar for spurious reasons in the early 1990s from a coin dealer near Berkeley, California. I think I paid about $500 for it, and now it's worth about $550, but in the meantime it's been worth more than double that, because of the price spike caused by catalytic converters in cars. I never noticed between then and now how much the price had gone up and back down.
In April 2002 I had Brian Knox jewelers in Champaign, Illinois weld a 90%Pt/10%Ir alloy loop onto the back of it, so it could be locked down to the table with a length of stainless steel cable.
Source: Coin Shop in California
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 15 April, 2002
Price: $600/including loop
Size: 1.5"
Purity: 99.95%
The Elements book Mad Science book Periodic Table Poster  Click here to buy a book, photographic periodic table poster, card deck, or 3D print based on the images you see here!
Platinum Platiniferous Pyroxenite

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Platiniferous Pyroxenite.
Platiniferous Pyroxenite from Merensky Reef, Transvaal, South Africa.
Source: Jensan Scientifics
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 29 October, 2008
Text Updated: 22 April, 2009
Price: Anonymous
Size: 0.2"
Composition: PtAuAg
Platinum Photo Card Deck of the Elements

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Photo Card Deck of the Elements.
In late 2006 I published a photo periodic table and it's been selling well enough to encourage me to make new products. This one is a particularly neat one: A complete card deck of the elements with one big five-inch (12.7cm) square card for every element. If you like this site and all the pictures on it, you'll love this card deck. And of course if you're wondering what pays for all the pictures and the internet bandwidth to let you look at them, the answer is people buying my posters and cards decks. Hint hint.
Source: Theodore Gray
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 19 November, 2008
Text Updated: 21 November, 2008
Price: $35
Size: 5"
Composition: HHeLiBeBCNOFNeNaMg AlSiPSClArKCaScTiVCrMn FeCoNiCuZnGaGeAsSeBrKr RbSrYZrNbMoTcRuRhPdAg CdInSnSbTeIXeCsBaLaCePr NdPmSmEuGdTbDyHoErTm YbLuHfTaWReOsIrPtAuHgTl PbBiPoAtRnFrRaAcThPaUNp PuAmCmBkCfEsFmMdNoLrRf DbSgBhHsMtDsRgUubUutUuq UupUuhUusUuo
Platinum Platinum ore from Jensan Set

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Platinum ore from Jensan Set.
This sample represents platinum in the "The Grand Tour of the Periodic Table" mineral collection from Jensan Scientifics. Visit my page about element collecting for a general description, or see photographs of all the samples from the set in a periodic table layout or with bigger pictures in numerical order.
Source: Jensan Scientifics
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 30 October, 2008
Text Updated: 31 October, 2008
Price: Anonymous
Size: 1"
Composition: Pt
Platinum Native Platinum

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Native Platinum.
Description from the source:
Platinum (Pt cub.), Goodnews Bay, Alaska, USA. Little nugget, rare for the locality. 2 mm; >1 g.
Source: Simone Citon
Contributor: John Gray
Acquired: 26 September, 2008
Text Updated: 28 September, 2008
Price: Trade
Size: 0.07"
Composition: Pt
Platinum Native platinum

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Native platinum. (External Sample)
Natural platinum nugget.
Location: The Harvard Museum of Natural History
Photographed: 2 October, 2002
Size: 1
Purity: >90%
The Elements book Mad Science book Periodic Table Poster  Click here to buy a book, photographic periodic table poster, card deck, or 3D print based on the images you see here!